VANCOUVER, British Columbia, March 16, 2016
/PRNewswire/ –Silver Wheaton Corp. (“Silver Wheaton” or the “Company”) (TSX:SLW) (NYSE: SLW) is pleased to announce its results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2015. All figures are presented in United States dollars unless otherwise noted.
Silver Wheaton achieved record production for a fifth straight quarter resulting in over 47 million silver equivalent ounces produced in 2015. Total silver and gold ounces sold also came in at a record level for a fourth quarter in a row, with over 41 million silver equivalent ounces sold during 2015. The record production and sales were driven by strong results at all four cornerstone assets, Salobo, Peñasquito, San Dimas, and Antamina, and were also driven by the start-up of Constancia and record production at one of our oldest streams, Zinkgruvan. Silver Wheaton expects to produce 54 million silver equivalent ounces1 in 2016, a forecast increase of over 13% relative to 2015.
FULL YEAR HIGHLIGHTS
FOURTH QUARTER HIGHLIGHTS
EVENTS SUBSEQUENT TO THE QUARTER
“2015 was a year of growth for Silver Wheaton as we set new records each quarter for production and sales volumes. These records were driven by our cornerstone assets, San Dimas, Peñasquito, Salobo, and as of last November, Antamina, as well as one of our key growth assets, Constancia,” said Randy Smallwood, President and Chief Executive Officer of Silver Wheaton. “While our assets performed well in 2015, the year was not without challenges. Along with pressure on precious metals prices throughout the year, Silver Wheaton received Notices of Reassessment from the CRA in September. We will continue to vigorously defend our position and work towards the quickest avenue for resolution. Given these headwinds, we believe our share price doesn’t always reflect the quality of our portfolio, which was the reason why we initiated our first ever share buyback in 2015.”
“Our focus at Silver Wheaton has always been to add ounces from high-quality, low-cost mines. This was clearly illustrated in the fourth quarter when we added Antamina, one of the lowest cost, largest copper mines in the world, into a portfolio that was already deriving over 90% of its production from mines in the lowest half of their respective cost curves. Throughout the year it was not only the cornerstone assets that performed well; one of our very first streams, Zinkgruvan, had record attributable production in 2015, and the mine continues to grow and improve. We are proud of our existing portfolio of assets and believe it represents the highest quality portfolio in the entire precious metals space. With sector leading cash flows, no committed capital expenditures, and an environment ripe with opportunities, we believe that we will continue to deliver accretive growth for our shareholders by investing into top quality assets.”
Revenue was $200.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2015, on silver equivalent sales of 13.6 million ounces (8.8 million ounces of silver and 64,900 ounces of gold). This represents a 43% increase from the $140.4 million of revenue generated in the fourth quarter of 2014 due primarily to a 59% increase in the number of silver equivalent ounces sold, partially offset by a 10% decrease in the average realized silver equivalent price ($14.73 in Q4 2015 compared with $16.43 in Q4 2014).
Revenue was $648.7 million in 2015, on silver equivalent sales of 41.6 million ounces (26.6 million ounces of silver and 202,300 ounces of gold). This represents a 5% increase from the $620.2 million of revenue generated in 2014, due primarily to a 26% increase in the number of silver equivalent ounces sold, partially offset by a 17% decrease in the average realized silver equivalent price ($15.60 in 2015 compared with $18.86 in 2014).
Costs and Expenses
Average cash costs2 in the fourth quarter of 2015 were $4.50 per silver equivalent ounce as compared with $4.51 during the comparable period of 2014. This resulted in a cash operating margin2 of $10.23 per silver equivalent ounce, a reduction of 14% as compared with Q4 2014. The decrease in the cash operating margin was primarily due to a 10% decrease in the average realized silver equivalent price in Q4 2015 compared with Q4 2014.
Average cash costs2 during the year ended December 31, 2015 were $4.58 per silver equivalent ounce, compared with $4.59 during the comparable period of 2014. This resulted in a cash operating margin2 of $11.02 per silver equivalent ounce, a reduction of 23% as compared with 2014. The decrease in the cash operating margin was primarily due to a 17% decrease in the average silver equivalent price realized in 2015 compared with 2014.
Earnings and Operating Cash Flows
Adjusted net earnings2 and cash flow from operations in the fourth quarter of 2015 were $57.4 million ($0.14 per share) and $133.4 million ($0.33 per share2), compared with $52.0 million ($0.14 per share) and $94.1 million ($0.26 per share2) for the same period in 2014, an increase of 10% and 42%, respectively. Earnings and cash flow continued to be impacted by lower gold and silver prices.
Adjusted net earnings2 and cash flow from operations during the year ended December 31, 2015 were $210.4 million ($0.53 per share) and $431.4 million ($1.09 per share2), compared with $268.0 million ($0.75 per share) and $431.9 million ($1.20 per share2) for the same period in 2014, a decrease of 22% with respect to adjusted net earnings2, with cash flows from operations being virtually unchanged.
At December 31, 2015, the Company had approximately $103 million of cash on hand and $1,466 million outstanding under the Company’s $2 billion revolving term loan.
On September 18, 2015 the Company announced it had received TSX approval to purchase up to 20,229,671 Common Shares (representing 5% of the Company’s outstanding Common Shares as of September 11, 2015) over a period of twelve months commencing on September 23, 2015. To date, the Company has repurchased 2,887,854 common shares under the NCIB at an average price of $13.58 per share, including 2,123,065 purchased subsequent to December 31, 2015.
At the end of each reporting period, the Company assesses each precious metal purchase agreement to determine whether any indication of impairment exists. If such an indication exists, the recoverable amount of the precious metal purchase agreement is estimated in order to determine the extent of the impairment (if any). During the three months ended December 31, 2015, the Company recognized impairment charges of $230.9 million related to its Barrick and Keno Hill silver interests, its 777 silver and gold interest and its Sudbury gold interest.
As per Barrick Gold Corp.’s (“Barrick”) 2015 annual financial statements, Barrick states that there is significant uncertainty with respect to the estimated timeline and the estimated remaining construction costs for the Pascua-Lama project. The Barrick silver interest (“Barrick PMPA”) had a carrying value at December 31, 2015, of $607.8 million (inclusive of capitalized interest in the amount of $83.8 million). Management has estimated that the recoverable amount at December 31, 2015 under the Barrick PMPA was $498.1 million, representing its fair value less cost to sell and resulting in an impairment charge of $109.7 million.
During the fourth quarter of 2015, the Company was provided with a new mine plan related to the 777 mine from Hudbay Minerals Inc. (“Hudbay”). Based on this new mine plan, total recoverable ounces for the remaining mine life are approximately 39% lower than previously estimated. At December 31, 2015, management estimated that the recoverable amount under the 777 silver and gold interest was $81.6 million, representing its fair value less cost to sell and resulting in a further impairment charge of $61.2 million, for a total impairment during 2015 of $215.2 million.
The delay in receiving deliveries relative to Keno Hill due to an interim suspension of operations in the third quarter of 2013 is an indicator of impairment related to the Keno Hill silver interest. At December 31, 2015, management estimated that the recoverable amount under the Keno Hill silver interest was $33.4 million, representing its fair value less cost to sell and resulting in an impairment charge of $10.5 million.
During 2015, the Company recognized continued losses per ounce relative to its Sudbury gold interest (the “Sudbury PMPA”), which management considers to be an indicator of impairment. The Sudbury PMPA, which was acquired in March 2013 for $623.6 million (including warrants having an exercise price of $65 which were valued at $53.6 million), had a carrying value at December 31, 2015 of $555.7 million. Management has estimated that the recoverable amount at December 31, 2015 under the Sudbury PMPA was $506.2 million, representing its fair value less cost to sell and resulting in an impairment charge of $49.4 million.
Update on CRA Dispute and Audit of the Company’s International Transactions
On October 8, 2015, Silver Wheaton filed a notice of objection for each of the 2005 to 2010 taxation years following the receipt of Notices of Reassessment (the “Reassessments”) from the CRA in September 2015. The CRA’s position in the Reassessments is that the transfer pricing provisions of the Income Tax Act (Canada) relating to income earned by the Company’s foreign subsidiaries outside of Canada should apply such that the income of Silver Wheaton subject to tax in Canada should be increased by an amount equal to substantially all of the income earned outside of Canada by the Company’s foreign subsidiaries for the 2005 to 2010 taxation years. Management believes that the Company has filed its tax returns and paid applicable taxes in compliance with Canadian tax law, and, as a result, no amounts have been recorded for any potential liability arising from this matter. Silver Wheaton intends to vigorously defend its tax filing positions. Silver Wheaton is required to make a deposit of 50% of the reassessed amounts of tax, interest and penalties. On March 1, 2016, Silver Wheaton received approval from the CRA to post security in the form of a letter of guarantee as opposed to a cash deposit. The letter of guarantee is to be in the amount of Cdn$191.7 million which includes interest accrued to-date plus estimated interest for the following year.
On January 8, 2016, Silver Wheaton filed a Notice of Appeal with the Tax Court of Canada, electing to pursue resolution of the matters relating to the Reassessments for the 2005 to 2010 taxation years through a judicial court process rather than continue to pursue the CRA’s internal appeals process. The timing for the court process is uncertain. On January 19, 2016, Silver Wheaton received correspondence advising that the CRA would be commencing an audit of the Company’s international transactions covering the 2011 to 2013 taxation years. This correspondence is not a proposal or notice of reassessment and the Company is not in a position to determine what, if any, position the CRA will take in respect of the 2011 to 2013 taxation years. However, if the CRA were to take a position similar to that underlying the Reassessments for the 2005 to 2010 taxation years, the Company estimates that the CRA could assert that taxes payable in Canada would increase for the 2011 to 2013 taxation years by approximately $310 million. Taxation years subsequent to 2013 also remain open to audit by the CRA.
Fourth Quarter Asset Highlights
During the fourth quarter of 2015, attributable silver equivalent production was 15.5 million ounces (10.3 million ounces of silver and 69,200 ounces of gold), representing an increase of 70% compared with the fourth quarter of 2014.
Operational highlights for the quarter ended December 31, 2015, are as follows:
In the fourth quarter of 2015, Silver Wheaton, through its wholly owned subsidiary Silver Wheaton (Caymans) Ltd. (“SWC”), agreed to acquire from Anani Investments Ltd., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Glencore, an amount of silver equal to 33.75% of the silver production from the Antamina mine, located in Peru until delivery of 140 million ounces of silver and 22.5% of silver production thereafter for the life of mine silver production at a fixed 100% payable rate. SWC paid Glencore cash consideration of US$900 million for the silver stream. In addition, SWC will make ongoing payments of 20% of spot price per silver ounce delivered. The silver stream was effective September 30, 2015, resulting in production and sales attributable to Silver Wheaton of 2.4 million and 1.3 million ounces, respectively, in the fourth quarter of 2015. Silver production is expected to average 4.7 million ounces per year over the first 20 years.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, Salobo produced a record 37,680 ounces of gold attributable to SWC, an increase of approximately 208% relative to the fourth quarter of 2014. This increase was primarily due to the doubling of the percentage of gold that SWC is entitled to and the increased throughput as a result of the expansion to 24 million tonnes per annum, which commenced production in mid-2014. According to Vale’s fourth quarter 2015 production report, Salobo’s concentration plant processed run-of-mine ore at almost full capacity (24 million tonnes per annum) in the fourth quarter of 2015. Furthermore, Vale reports that Salobo is expected to improve copper production in the second quarter of 2016, as rain decreases and higher grade ore faces are mined.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, Peñasquito produced 1.8 million ounces of silver attributable to Silver Wheaton, an increase of approximately 12% relative to the fourth quarter of 2014. This increase was due to higher grades being mined as substantial mining took place in the heart of the deposit. As disclosed in Goldcorp Inc.’s (“Goldcorp”) fourth quarter of 2015 MD&A, construction of the Northern Well Field project (“NWF”) resumed during the fourth quarter of 2015 following prior suspension of construction due to an illegal blockade by a local community. Completion of the NWF is now expected to be in late 2016. Contingency plans remain in place to ensure that fresh water supply to the mine continues unimpeded until the NWF is fully operational.
During the fourth quarter of 2015, Goldcorp completed the Metallurgical Enhancement Project (“MEP”) Feasibility Study and determined that the Concentrate Enrichment Process component of the MEP no longer met Goldcorp’s required rates of return due to improved fundamentals in the concentrate smelting market. The other component of the MEP, the Pyrite Leach Plant (“PLP”) envisages leaching a pyrite concentrate from the zinc flotation circuit tails to recover gold and silver that would otherwise report to the tailings facility at Peñasquito. An investment decision on PLP is expected by mid-2016, which, if approved, is expected to be in production by the end of 2018.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, attributable production from San Dimas was 2.3 million ounces of silver, an increase of approximately 33% relative to the fourth quarter of 2014. As per Primero Mining Corp.’s (“Primero”) fourth quarter of 2015 MD&A, this growth was due to a number of factors including higher throughput related to the ongoing expansion of the mill to 3,000 tonnes per day (“tpd”), increased silver recoveries, increased long-hole mining production, and increased availability of the high-grade Jessica vein. Primero further reported that the San Dimas mine is now able to reach targeted productions near 3,000 tpd and that the mill expansion to 3,000 tpd is expected in the third quarter of 2016. On February 3, 2016, Primero announced that its Mexican subsidiary had received a legal claim from the Mexican tax authorities, Servicio de Administración Tributaria (“SAT”), seeking to nullify the Advance Pricing Agreement (“APA”) issued by SAT in 2012. Primero has indicated that it intends to vigorously defend the validity of the APA.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, Vale’s Sudbury mines had record attributable gold production of 12,203 ounces, an increase of approximately 23% relative to the fourth quarter of 2014. This increase was attributable to higher mill recoveries and higher production from the Coleman and Totten mines.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, SWC amended its silver purchase agreement with Glencore on the Yauliyacu mining operations in Peru dated March 23, 2006. The term of the agreement, which was set to expire in 2026, was extended to the life of mine. Additionally, effective January 1, 2016, Glencore will deliver to SWC a per annum amount equal to the first 1.5 million ounces of payable silver produced at Yauliyacu and 50% of any excess. Finally, the price paid for each ounce of silver delivered under the agreement has been increased by $4.50 per ounce plus, if the market price of silver exceeds $20 per ounce, 50% of the excess, to a maximum of $10 per ounce.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, Constancia produced approximately 4,617 ounces of gold and 0.6 million ounces of silver attributable to Silver Wheaton. The mine declared commercial production on April 30, 2015, and continues to ramp-up as expected. As per Hudbay’s news release dated January 13, 2016, during the fourth quarter of 2015, shipments of copper concentrate from the Constancia mine to the port in Matarani increased with improved trucking capacity, resulting in significant inventory drawdown. As a result, attributable gold ounces produced but not yet delivered to Silver Wheaton’s decreased by approximately 10%.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, attributable gold production from Minto was 5,237 ounces, an increase of approximately 24% relative to the fourth quarter of 2014, primarily due to a pocket of higher grade underground material being mined in the quarter. According to Capstone Mining Corp.’s (“Capstone”) fourth quarter production results, stripping of the Minto North pit proceeded as scheduled with lower-grade ore being reached in December.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, Zinkgruvan had record attributable silver production of 0.7 million ounces, an increase of approximately 21% relative to the fourth quarter of 2014, resulting in a record 2.5 million silver ounces in 2015. According to Lundin Mining Corp.’s (“Lundin”) news release dated January 21, 2016, Zinkgruvan achieved new annual records relating to tonnes of ore mined and milled. Furthermore, Lundin is reportedly undertaking an expansion project aimed at increasing Zinkgruvan’s mill capacity by approximately 10% by the end of 2017.
Produced But Not Yet Delivered 3
As at December 31, 2015, payable silver equivalent ounces produced but not yet delivered to Silver Wheaton by its partners increased by 0.5 million ounces to approximately 6.9 million silver equivalent payable ounces, as decreases at Salobo and Peñasquito were more than offset by an increase at the newly acquired Antamina silver interest. Payable ounces produced but not yet delivered to Silver Wheaton companies are expected to average approximately two to three months of annualized production but may vary from quarter to quarter due to a number of mining operation factors including mine ramp-up and timing of shipments.
Detailed mine by mine production and sales figures can be found in the Appendix to this press release and in Silver Wheaton’s consolidated MD&A in the ‘Results of Operations and Operational Review’ section.
Events Subsequent to the Quarter
On January 27, 2016, the Company announced that SWC had signed a nonbinding term sheet with Panoro to enter into an Early Deposit Precious Metals Purchase Agreement for the Cotabambas project located in Peru (the “Proposed Agreement”). Under the terms of the proposed agreement, SWC will be entitled to purchase 100% of the silver production and 25% of the gold production from the Cotabambas project until 90 million silver equivalent ounces have been delivered to SWC, at which point the stream would decrease to 66.67% of silver production and 16.67% of gold production for the life of mine. Under the Proposed Agreement, SWC will pay a total cash consideration of $140 million plus an ongoing production payment of the lesser of: i) $5.90 for each silver ounce and $450 for each gold ounce (both subject to a 1% annual inflation adjustment starting in the fourth year after the completion test is satisfied) and ii) the prevailing market price. Once certain conditions have been met, SWC will advance $14 million to Panoro, spread over up to nine years. Following the delivery of a bankable definitive feasibility study, environmental study and impact assessment, and other related documents, and receipt of permits and construction commencing, SWC may then advance the remaining deposit or elect to terminate the Proposed Agreement. The entering into of the Proposed Agreement is subject to the negotiation and completion of definitive documentation. There can be no assurance that the Proposed Agreement will be completed on the terms set out in the non-binding term sheet, or at all.
Reserves and Resources
As of December 31, 2015, Proven and Probable Mineral Reserves attributable to Silver Wheaton were 774.0 million ounces of silver compared with 756.5 million ounces as reported in Silver Wheaton’s 2014 Annual Information Form (“AIF”), an increase of 2%, and 8.89 million ounces of gold compared with 9.11 million ounces, a decrease of 2%. On an attributable Measured and Indicated Mineral Resource basis, silver resources were 674.6 million ounces compared with 556.5 million ounces as reported in Silver Wheaton’s 2014 AIF, an increase of 21%, and gold resources were 2.70 million ounces compared with 2.78 million ounces, a decrease of 3%. On an attributable Inferred Mineral Resource basis, silver resources were 460.9 million ounces compared with 263.5 million as reported in Silver Wheaton’s 2014 AIF, an increase of 75%, and gold resources were 2.38 million ounces compared with 1.46 million ounces, an increase of 64%.
Estimated attributable reserves and resources contained in this press release are based on information available to the Company as of March 2, 2016, and therefore will not reflect updates, if any, after that date. Updated reserves and resources data incorporating year-end 2015 estimates will also be included in the Company’s 2015 Annual Information Form. Silver Wheaton’s most current attributable reserves and resources, as of December 31, 2015, can be found on the Company’s website at www.silverwheaton.com. Reserves and resources include Cotabambas. The entering into of the Cotabambas Early Deposit Agreement is subject to the negotiation and completion of definitive documentation. There can be no assurance that the Cotabambas Early Deposit Agreement will be completed on the terms set out in the non-binding term sheet, or at all.
2016 and Long-Term Production Forecast
Silver Wheaton is pleased to provide its updated one-year and long-term production guidance. For 2016, Silver Wheaton’s estimated attributable silver equivalent production is forecast to be 54 million silver equivalent ounces1, including 265,000 ounces of gold. Silver Wheaton’s estimated average annual attributable production over the next five years (including 2016) is anticipated to be approximately 52 million silver equivalent ounces1 per year, including 260,000 ounces of gold.
Over the next five years, forecast production growth from Salobo, Peñasquito and Constancia is expected to be offset by the cessation of production from assets with fixed terms. In particular, the 10-year-term contract on Capstone Mining’s Cozamin mine, acquired with Silver Wheaton’s 2009 acquisition of Silverstone, expires in April 2017. In addition, Silver Wheaton’s streaming agreement with Barrick regarding Pascua-Lama provides the Company with silver production from the Lagunas Norte, Veladero, and Pierina mines until March 31, 2018. Finally, Hudbay’s Constancia mine is expected to meet the completion test, resulting in gold production from the 777 mine attributable to Silver Wheaton dropping from 100% to 50% in 2017. And lastly, as a reminder, Silver Wheaton does not include any production from Barrick’s Pascua-Lama project or Hudbay’s Rosemont project in its guidance.
Attributable mine-by-mine actual 2014 and 2015 production and forecast 2016 production are as follows:
Webcast and Conference Call Details
A conference call will be held Thursday, March 17, 2016, starting at 11:00 am (Eastern Time) to discuss these results. To participate in the live call, please use one of the following methods:
Participants should dial in five to ten minutes before the call.
The conference call will be recorded and available until March 23, 2016. The webcast will be available for one year. You can listen to an archive of the call by one of the following methods:
This earnings release should be read in conjunction with Silver Wheaton’s MD&A and Financial Statements, which are available on the Company’s website at www.silverwheaton.com and have been posted on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
Mr. Neil Burns, Vice President, Technical Services for Silver Wheaton, is a “qualified person” as such term is defined under National Instrument 43-101, and has reviewed and approved the technical information including information on mineral reserves and mineral resources disclosed in this news release.
About Silver Wheaton
Silver Wheaton is the largest pure precious metals streaming company in the world. The Company has streams on some of the largest and lowest cost mines in the world. Silver Wheaton’s production and growth are founded on cornerstone assets including the Salobo mine in Brazil, the Peñasquito and San Dimas mines in Mexico, and the Antamina mine in Peru. Based upon its current agreements, forecast 2016 estimated annual attributable production is approximately 54 million silver equivalent ounces1, including 265,000 ounces of gold. Silver Wheaton’s estimated average annual attributable production over the next five years is anticipated to be approximately 52 million silver equivalent ounces1 per year, including 260,000 ounces of gold.
Results of Operations
The Company currently has nine reportable operating segments: the silver produced by the San Dimas, Yauliyacu, Peñasquito, Antamina and Barrick mines, the gold produced by the Sudbury and Salobo mines, the silver and gold produced by the Other mines and corporate operations.
Silver Wheaton has included, throughout this document, certain non-IFRS performance measures, including (i) operating cash flow per share (basic and diluted); (ii) average cash costs of silver and gold on a per ounce basis; and (iii) cash operating margin.
i. Adjusted net earnings and adjusted net earnings per share is calculated by removing the effects of the non-cash impairment charges. The Company believes that, in addition to conventional measures prepared in accordance with IFRS, the Company and certain investors use this information to evaluate the Company’s performance.
The following table provides a reconciliation of adjusted net earnings and adjusted net earnings per share (basic and diluted).
ii. Operating cash flow per share (basic and diluted) is calculated by dividing cash generated by operating activities by the weighted average number of shares outstanding (basic and diluted). The Company presents operating cash flow per share as management and certain investors use this information to evaluate the Company’s performance in comparison to other companies in the precious metals mining industry who present results on a similar basis.
iii. Average cash cost of silver and gold on a per ounce basis is calculated by dividing the total cost of sales, less depletion, by the ounces sold. In the precious metals mining industry, this is a common performance measure but does not have any standardized meaning. In addition to conventional measures prepared in accordance with IFRS, management and certain investors use this information to evaluate the Company’s performance and ability to generate cash flow.
iv. Cash operating margin is calculated by subtracting the average cash cost of silver and gold on a per ounce basis from the average realized selling price of silver and gold on a per ounce basis. The Company presents cash operating margin as management and certain investors use this information to evaluate the Company’s performance in comparison to other companies in the precious metals mining industry who present results on a similar basis.
These non-IFRS measures do not have any standardized meaning prescribed by IFRS, and other companies may calculate these measures differently. The presentation of these non-IFRS measures is intended to provide additional information and should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for measures of performance prepared in accordance with IFRS. For more detailed information, please refer to Silver Wheaton’s Management Discussion and Analysis available on the Company’s website at www.silverwheaton.comand posted on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD LOOKING-STATEMENTS
The information contained herein contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and “forward-looking information” within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking statements, which are all statements other than statements of historical fact, include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to:
Generally, these forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “plans”, “expects” or “does not expect”, “is expected”, “budget”, “scheduled”, “estimates”, “forecasts”, “projects”, “intends”, “anticipates” or “does not anticipate”, or “believes”, “potential”, or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would”, “might” or “will be taken”, “occur” or “be achieved”. Forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements of Silver Wheaton to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including but not limited to:
As well as those factors discussed in the section entitled “Description of the Business – Risk Factors” in Silver Wheaton’s Annual Information Form and the additional risks identified under “Risks and Uncertainties” in Management’s Discussion and Analysis for the period ended December 31, 2015, both available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com and in Silver Wheaton’s Form 40-F and Form 6-K filed March 16, 2016, both on file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, D.C. (the “Disclosure”).
Forward-looking statements are based on assumptions management currently believes to be reasonable, including but not limited to:
Although Silver Wheaton has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause results, level of activity, performance or achievements not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate and even if events or results described in the forward-looking statements are realized or substantially realized, there can be no assurance that they will have the expected consequences to, or effects on, Silver Wheaton. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements and are cautioned that actual outcomes may vary. The forward-looking statements included herein for the purpose of providing investors with information to assist them in understanding Silver Wheaton’s expected financial and operational performance and may not be appropriate for other purposes. Any forward looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it is made. Silver Wheaton does not undertake to update any forward-looking statements that are included or incorporated by reference herein, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.
CAUTIONARY NOTE TO UNITED STATES INVESTORS REGARDING PRESENTATION OF MINERAL RESERVE AND MINERAL RESOURCE ESTIMATES: The information contained herein has been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the securities laws in effect in Canada, which differ from the requirements of United States securities laws. The terms “mineral reserve”, “proven mineral reserve” and “probable mineral reserve” are Canadian mining terms defined in accordance with Canadian National Instrument 43-101 – Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects (“NI 43-101”) and the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (the “CIM”) – CIM Definition Standards on Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves, adopted by the CIM Council, as amended (the “CIM Standards”). These definitions differ from the definitions in Industry Guide 7 (“SEC Industry Guide 7”) under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “U.S. Securities Act”). Under U.S. standards, mineralization may not be classified as a “reserve” unless the determination has been made that the mineralization could be economically and legally produced or extracted at the time the reserve determination is made. Also, under SEC Industry Guide 7 standards, a “final” or “bankable” feasibility study is required to report reserves, the three-year historical average price is used in any reserve or cash flow analysis to designate reserves and the primary environmental analysis or report must be filed with the appropriate governmental authority. In addition, the terms “mineral resource”, “measured mineral resource”, “indicated mineral resource” and “inferred mineral resource” are defined in and required to be disclosed by NI 43-101; however, these terms are not defined terms under SEC Industry Guide 7 and are normally not permitted to be used in reports and registration statements filed with the SEC. Investors are cautioned not to assume that any part or all of the mineral deposits in these categories will ever be converted into reserves. “Inferred mineral resources” have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence and as to their economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of an inferred mineral resource will ever be upgraded to a higher category. Under Canadian rules, estimates of inferred mineral resources may not form the basis of feasibility or pre-feasibility studies, except in rare cases. Investors are cautioned not to assume that all or any part of an inferred mineral resource exists or is economically or legally mineable. Mineral resources that are not mineral reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability. Disclosure of “contained ounces” in a resource is permitted disclosure under Canadian regulations; however, the SEC normally only permits issuers to report mineralization that does not constitute “reserves” by SEC standards as in place tonnage and grade without reference to unit measures. Accordingly, information contained herein that describes the Company’s mineral deposits may not be comparable to similar information made public by U.S. companies subject to reporting and disclosure requirements under the United States federal securities laws and the rules and regulations thereunder. United States investors are urged to consider closely the disclosure in the Annual Information Form, a copy of which is available at www.sec.gov.
In accordance with the Company’s MD&A and financial statements, reference to the Company includes the Company’s wholly owned subsidiaries.